At the Movies with Kane and BN

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Minority Report

If only the precogs knew about what would happen to RadioShack.

Pretty good. I think it's got the right idea of what it was going for and Spielberg used the tech noir thriller to great effect and teaming up with Tom Cruise was as expected. This definitely reminded me of other movies like Total Recall and Robocop... both Paul Verhoeven movies and I couldn't stop thinking about what Paul Verhoeven's Minority Report would look like (probably more bloody and gory and the satire would be in full effect). The movie has an interesting balancing act of being a little too goofy and action-packed with the seriousness of the themes they were tackling. Really love all the futuristic set designs and seeing what did and what didn't hold up after 22 years. Performace-wise, I thought Tom Cruise, Colin Farrell, Max von Sydow, and Samantha Morton were great but I didn't expect to see Peter Stormare, Tim Blake Nelson, and Neal McDonough in this, so that was cool. While the directing and cinematography are still great, I still have that same issue with AI: Artificial Intelligence of that cold blinding JJ Abrams-style glare that took over the movie but I get why they did it. All the product placement is another thing where I get why they did it but I feel like they could have done the Robocop route and made up some brands. There's also a section or two where the movie kinda loses momentum. Overall, it's a movie that I think both Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg were great at but for a story like this, I think they could have gotten someone even better with less glossyness (if that makes sense) like a Paul Verhoeven.
3.5/5
 
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Out of Darkness


It's funny that this is a movie taking place 45,000 years ago but yet all of them have smartphone faces.

This was a pretty solid and bleak survival thriller that acts like a slasher much in the same vein as Alien or Predator. The prehistoric setting does most of the work and having the movie mostly shot on location adds to the harsh environment vibe that it's going for. It's also entirely spoken through a made-up language and I thought they did a good job convincing us that it sounded coherent enough. The movie does have that 10,000 BC problem of casting actors that look modern and well-groomed and well-dressed even when they're running for their lives and while it did bother me at first, it didn't do enough to ruin the movie for me. The cinematography and music were pretty well done and I did like the performances mainly by Safia Oakley-Green who carries the movie. I do wish this movie had more going on, especially between the first two acts but I really did like how it ended. Overall, I enjoyed it as a solid thriller and a vibe that has a little more to say about how tribalism sucks.
3.5/5
 
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MoviePass, MovieCrash

Alright, three things...

1. After seeing this, I'm glad I abused the MoviePass system back in the day before they placed the restrictions that led to their demise (along with the money hemorrhaging). Best time I ever had.
2. MoviePass credit cards are going for HOW MUCH ON EBAY?
3. ...oh thank god I still kept the card.

A pretty decent doc that goes into the MoviePass bubble that ultimately changed movie theaters for better and for worse. It's also ultimately a story about two black businessmen who started an incredibly innovative company that got taken over by two rich white shady investors. As a doc, much like the other Fyre Fest-style documentaries that have been super popular, this kinda does the same kind of thing where it highlights a trendy/scandalous moment of the time in pop culture and tells the story from all sides. Still, they do a good job of showing us a decent look inside how a business can start off with good intentions and be bought out or shoved out of their own company by even richer men with hedge fund backing (Mitch Lowe and Ted Farnsworth) to do some shady business practices. You can also tell it really means a lot from the original owners and founders of MoviePass, Stacy Spikes and Hamet Watt to clear the air and tell what really happened behind the scenes even though my cynical side says this is just their blatant PR because Stacy Spikes took back the company after it went into bankruptcy. Overall, interesting to watch as a former MoviePass member and not bad for a doc but it's still pretty standard for a lot of these corporate docs.
3/5
 
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Ezra

Driving from New York to Michigan in 12 hours with no stops is so insane.

A pretty straightforward family melodrama about a father, his ex-wife, and his autistic son. It's got all the hallmarks of one of these indie films that get big-name stars to be in it like Bobby Cannavale, Robert De Niro, Rose Byrne, Vera Farmiga, Whoopi Goldberg, and Tony Goldwyn who directed this. I did like the stand-up comedy angle of it all and using real places like the Comedy Cellar does make it feel more authentic. There's also a lot of on-location shooting that makes it feel more lively than most indie dramedies that don't really showcase the city they're in. The dynamic between Bobby Cannavale and William Fitzgerald was interesting and they don't really make things too simple and too clean of a situation. The movie also goes into a road trip that also becomes a chase which is the most entertaining part of the movie despite it not really making a whole lot of sense. Still, overall it's exactly the kind of movie you think it is but I thought it was well done enough to carry itself to the finish line and I thought Robert De Niro gave a hell of a performance, especially towards the end.
3/5
 
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Young Woman and the Sea

If this was set today, Trudy would be singing Just Keep Swimming instead of Ain't We Got Fun.

Pretty good. Disney is back making more sports biopics and this does feel like some of the ones they would have made 20 years ago. It's very formulaic, very clichéd, and very heavy-handed with its messaging, but still puts in the effort that makes it work somehow. It's sent around Daisy Ridley who plays Trudy Ederle who managed to become a world-renowned swimmer who went to the Olympics and I thought Dasiy did a great job with it. I liked the rest of the cast like Stephen Graham, Christopher Eccleston, Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Glenn Fleshler, but I thought the surprise performance was Sian Clifford who's doing a comically perfect old New York accent who plays Daisy Ridley's swimming instructor. The movie looks pretty nice and having Jerry Bruckheimer's budget, allows Joachim Rønning to do a good job recreating 1920s Coney Island and a lot of the docks and crowd work. Overall, while it doesn't really stand out among the rest of sports biopics, this does have a feel-good vibe to it that I enjoyed.
3/5
 
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In a Violent Nature

...what yoga position was that called again?

This was my kind of jam. It's a hauntingly quiet slasher that pays obvious homage to the Friday the 13th movies. It's from the point of view of the slasher almost entirely and it uses the framework of a typical Friday the 13th movie that has similar set pieces and story beats. Because it's from the point of view of the killer, it does have long stretches of scenes that play out almost in real-time and it might not be for everyone, especially the tiktok short attention span crowd. They do such a good job using stillness that adds in a lot of tension and build-up that works for me. The kills were pretty great and gruesome and it's almost as if the director was trying to get a new Friday the 13th movie to be made so he can do the kills that really haven't been done like this before, especially with one kill in particular. My only complaint is I kind of wish they explored a little more with certain moments and had more influences from other slashers. Overall, I loved it. It's a movie exclusively for fans of slashers and especially the Friday the 13th series and it gives you what you want in a very interesting and artistic way.
4/5
 
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Sting

Just like those two grannies, I too would like to sit around all day and watch old black and white horror movies.

Fun horror movie about a giant spider. This was pretty minimal budget-wise, but they do a lot with it. Where Infested felt more like an Evil Dead movie with some social messaging, this feels more like a Spielberg movie meets Eight-Legged Freaks. It's a fun light B-movie that knows how to get in and out with your time and I liked some of the camera work and practical effects this had. It's by the director of Wyrmwood so it's more or less similar to his other movies but this time it's a killer spider. The cast was pretty good but Alyla Browne (who played young Furiosa) is the clear stand-out in this. She pretty much carries the movie and she kinda reminds me of another Lulu Wison. Overall, a campy ride that knows what it is and has fun with it.
3/5
 
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Hit Man

I imagine if this was an actual theatrical release and not dumped on a streamer, we could have had a stack of deleted scenes where it's just Glen Powell going through all 30 of his characters.

A super fun and chill neo-noir romcom and it couldn't be more of a showcase of what Richard Linklater does best. It feels more tonally in line with Bernie than anything else and if you're looking for something like other lowbrow action-packed hitman movies then you're probably going to be disappointed. Glen Powell and Adria Arjona are unbelievably great in this and their chemistry is off the charts, it's what everyone thought Anyone But You was going to be in terms of romance. Glen Powell in particular does a great job managing through all the various characters he made up plus having to ultimately play dual personalities who are very distinct throughout the movie. To me, this is the star making role for Glen Powell and Adria Arjona. I also dug the supporting cast mainly Austin Amelio (who for some reason I thought was Ethan Embry the whole time), Retta, and Sanjay Rao who almost felt like they were in a different movie that also sort of worked. While it's mainly a romcom dressed up as a noir crime thriller, it also has deeper political/social undertones and commentary about the legal and justice system. It doesn't drown out the rest of the movie but I did like it was there and it gave the main plot some reassurance. I also love how they were able to shoot on location in New Orleans, which is funny considering Richard Linklater is from Texas. Overall, I loved it. It's definitely an incredibly well-done and relaxing Richard Linklater movie that might confuse the general public who went in expecting something like Mr. and Ms. Smith.
4/5
 
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The Watchers

That house was probably at least a grand a night on Airbnb even with no toilets or outlets.

Interesting concept for a mystery horror flick that ultimately had some problems in its execution. Thematically and visually, this kinda felt like 10 Cloverfield Lane meets The Blair Witch Project with a little bit of Invasion of the Body Snatchers thrown in. I think Ishana Night Shyamalan fumbled a little bit with the introduction and overall setup because it felt too rushed with the exposition. It needed some more time to breathe but once it got into the plot, it got better. I thought the best part about this movie was the cinematography and how they were able to shoot mirrors in such a cool way and I thought the creature designs were pretty extraordinary. Dakota Fanning was pretty good but I thought Olwen Fouéré kinda carries the movie with her monologues. I also thought Georgina Campbell was kinda wasted in this. It's one of those movies that you kinda guess where it's headed about halfway in and even with the twist, I thought it was kinda obvious but I did like where that ended ultimately. Overall I liked it but didn't love it. For Ishana Night Shyamalan's directorial debut, it's impressive, but it's also disappointing because this could have been much better.
3/5
 
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Bad Boys: Ride or Die

Reggie spinoff when?

Surprisingly better than the last one. Where Adil & Bilall were kinda playing it safe in the previous movie, here they really let it rip and do all the things they wanted to do with a bigger budget. They really did some incredibly inventive camera work and crazy action direction that you haven't seen before in a Bad Boys movie or any action movie recently. How the last movie felt more in line with the Fast and Furious model, here they really put that to the test because this does feel like one of the better Fast and Furious movies (4&5). There are also elements of the original Michael Bay Bad Boys and surprisingly The Fugitive which worked for me. Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are still the reason why these movies work so well and their banter is the highlight of the movie. They also introduced Rhea Seehorn into the mix and while I wanted more from her, her character felt like potential sequel material even though she does get a couple of good moments at the end. While the villains in these movies are often forgettable, they do a good job of giving you someone memorable at the very least. Overall, had a lot of fun and it's a solid summer popcorn movie.
3.5/5
 
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To Live and Die in L.A.

I'm pretty sure the reason why they kept telling us it's December/January is so they can have a reason to wear thick leather jackets in L.A.
Also when they started playing Dance Hall Days, I was immediately transported back to playing Vice City.

This was so damn good. It's the secret William Friedkin masterpiece that doesn't get enough recognition. In a lot of ways, this feels very much like The French Connection for the 80s just from a neo-noir perspective. Aesthetically it's one of the most 80s-looking movies ever alongside Night of the Comet from the neon noir cinematography to the incredible soundtrack by Wang Chung and it incorporated so many 80s crime thriller tropes that work really well. A lot of the time this movie also reminded me of Michael Mann in the way this was shot and laid out. William Petersen kinda plays the same role as Will Graham in Manhunter one year later which was cool. Willem Dafoe plays a phenomenally interesting villain that reminded me of a much more chilled-out version of Clarance Boddicker in Robocop. Also really enjoyed the performances by John Turturro, Darlanne Fluegel, and John Pankow. They don't hold back on the violence and the gore which takes this up a notch. There's also an incredible car chase scene that takes up a good chunk of the movie and it was so surprising that they were able to pull it off. All that being said there are a couple of pacing issues I had and of course, I thought some parts aged the worst like the opening action scene. Overall, an incredibly solid, gritty, and relentless crime flick that can only exist in the 80s.
4.5/5
 
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Inside Out 2

Bloofy and Anger would make an excellent 80s buddy cop movie.

Decent but it falls into the sequel trap and being kinda repetitive for Pixar. It does the natural progression of Riley's story by having her go through puberty and introducing all the new emotions that come with it. I thought it was interesting that they gave Maya Hawke as Anxiety the floor and almost made it her movie with the amount of scenes she gets, I thought she was great even if they gave her a little too much to do. Ayo Edebiri as Envy was fun but they didn't give her a lot to do and I thought Paul Walter Hauser as Embarrassment kinda steals the movie a couple of times. Thematically a lot of this movie also feels borrowed from a much better Pixar movie (Turning Red) and they don't really give it enough flavor to stand out. Overall, I had fun with it but it ultimately became an average Pixar sequel.
3/5
 
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Am I Ok?

[me seeing that Tig Notaro is a co-director of this]
Oh, it's gonna be high-end low energy.

A pretty good romantic dramedy that centers on Dakota Johnson and Sonoya Mizuno who play long-time best friends. It mostly deals with Dakota Johnson's character trying to figure out who she is and what kind of relationship she wants to be in, but it also has some light comedic moments in between. As much as I was enjoying this, this honestly felt like a 90-minute pilot for a streaming show that would have lasted maybe 3 seasons. It felt like making this a movie kinda does this a disservice a little bit even as a small "indie" film. The rest of the cast was fine like Jermaine Fowler and Kiersey Clemons but Molly Gordon was really good and really funny with the small amount of screen time she had. Overall, it was good and I really liked how they made Sonoya Mizuno a co-lead of a movie for once.
3/5
 
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Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2

Tigger is really out here quoting Freddy Krueger just because both share stripes.

Surprisingly an improvement over the first film... that they kind of explain away why it looks the way it does in this new one. You can tell they got a bigger budget, better cameras, and better actors to be in this one even though it still turns out to be a gory slasher that is still direct to video quality. They did a great job changing the character designs to make them actually horrific and they did a good job shooting them very well. They also clearly took inspiration from Terrifier 2 in terms of the level of gore and nastiness that they try to do here even though I think Terrififer 2 still wins in that department. And they also drew from Freddy and Jason with the style and overall vibe for Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and Owl. While the plot is definitely better than the last movie, it still feels cheap and kinda all over the place. Overall, while it's still not good and it still falls under "so bad it's good"... they did a better job this time around with making a cheap B-horror slasher.
2/5
 
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The Truth vs. Alex Jones

Those crazies really thought they were clever when they called it "Sandy Hoax". Also, Jones selling his snake oil merch while on trial was INSANE.

A pretty devastating documentary that talks about Alex Jones and his Sandy Hook defamation trials as well as the parents of the victims who suffered through this madness. Like with most docs, it does start out pretty standard with a lot of talking heads and going into detail about the events that unfolded which is harrowing to listen to but then they eventually do something more with this doc. I did like the little touch of exploring what public access television was in Austin TX in the 90s. The second half actually becomes a crazy inside look at this trial with all the cameras and mics in the world catching every little detail and what the ramifications are when you're dealing with someone like Alex Jones who refuses to acknowledge the facts or throwing a hissy fit like a child. Overall, definitely worth checking out.
3.5/5
 
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Beverly Hills Cop

Crazy Frog was really out here 20 years ago trying to make us all hate Axel's iconic theme song.

Finally got around to watching this from start to finish after seeing a few scenes on TV like 15 years ago, fun film all around. It's very much a quintessential 80s cop action/comedy that is star-driven and is surprisingly not overdone with comedy where nothing really matters in the end. It's a more refined and Hollywood-esque version of Eddie Murphy's role in 48 hrs and Eddie Murphy was great in this. Even more so I thought Lisa Eilbacher was fantastic in this and her chemistry with Eddie Murphy was so good. Surprised to see Ronny Cox, Jonathan Banks, and Paul Reiser in this and I thought Ronny Cox and Judge Reinhold in particular were pretty good and subversive as the lieutenant. Also, I still loved that there was a time when we could do practical stunts while the camera captured real people just looking from a distance. Overall, solid movie that still holds up, but I'm curious to see what the sequels look like.
4/5
 
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Beverly Hills Cop II

Me 40 minutes in: Man I wonder who the director is, it's so action-packed this time and full of cool cinematography.
Me when the credits roll and see Tony Scott's name: Of course!

A fun sequel that is even more refined and slick and incredibly 80s in every way. This has more in common with Die Hard and all the later 80s action films that try to be the American James Bond of that time. Bringing in Tony Scott really elevates the tone and action and you can tell they had more money to play with. Eddie Murphy was really great here and felt even more comfortable with all the more serious moments. I like how they almost redo the plot of the first one but put Ronny Cox in the friend spot so you get immediately put back into the world of Beverly Hills. They do a good job making you care for Billy and Taggart this time and all the funny bits with Eddie Murphy really work. As far as villains go they're pretty much doing basic Bond villains but I thought Brigitte Nielsen obviously stood out. Also, it was fun seeing all the cameos before they became really famous like Chris Rock and Gilbert Gottfried. Overall, a pretty good sequel that is slightly better than the original.
4/5
 
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Beverly Hills Cop

Crazy Frog was really out here 20 years ago trying to make us all hate Axel's iconic theme song.

Finally got around to watching this from start to finish after seeing a few scenes on TV like 15 years ago, fun film all around. It's very much a quintessential 80s cop action/comedy that is star-driven and is surprisingly not overdone with comedy where nothing really matters in the end. It's a more refined and Hollywood-esque version of Eddie Murphy's role in 48 hrs and Eddie Murphy was great in this. Even more so I thought Lisa Eilbacher was fantastic in this and her chemistry with Eddie Murphy was so good. Surprised to see Ronny Cox, Jonathan Banks, and Paul Reiser in this and I thought Ronny Cox and Judge Reinhold in particular were pretty good and subversive as the lieutenant. Also, I still loved that there was a time when we could do practical stunts while the camera captured real people just looking from a distance. Overall, solid movie that still holds up, but I'm curious to see what the sequels look like.
4/5

Just watched the first one a few days ago for the first time as well, had a great time with it!
 
I'm one of the few who really liked Robocop 3, so my mind is always open. lol
I don't know if I can say I like that one but there are elements that are entertaining as ****. Robocop 2, however, if amazing.
 
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Beverly Hills Cop III

I bet the Disney lawyers were fuming that they couldn't sue this project.

Pretty bad as expected compared to the previous two films but can't say I fully hate it. It was obvious they wanted to make their own Die Hard but set in a children's theme park and I thought on paper some of these ideas and moments kinda worked. This has a giant "Eddie Murphy wanted to make a movie for his kids" vibe throughout most of the movie and seeing that Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer did not return to produce tells you all you need to know about what direction they took for this 3rd movie. While John Landis has made better films in the past, he is still somewhat of a downgrade compared to Tony Scott or Martin Brest who have a very distinct style to their action. This for whatever reason looks pretty bland for the most part and almost TV-like in how it moves and operates. This movie reminded me of that time when Full House had a couple of episodes when they went to Disneyland. A lot of the humor is very hit or miss and even when someone comes back like Serge from the first movie, they drag that comedic bit to the ground. Replacing Taggart with Flint was another big miss and the chemistry between Eddie Murphy and the rest of the cast didn't feel genuine or special. They even wasted a good John Saxon role. Also, shout out to that random George Lucas cameo. But I will say did like some of the smaller moments and some of the unintentional "so bad it's good" comedy that kept me from really hating on it. In a way, this kinda falls in line with a lot of action sequels from the 80s and 90s where they clearly ran out of effort, time, and money but had a deadline to make it all happen. Overall, it's a bummer that this didn't work because they could have done something more inventive with the post-Die Hard movement in the 90s like Speed.
2/5
 
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Beverly Hills Cop III

I bet the Disney lawyers were fuming that they couldn't sue this project.

Pretty bad as expected compared to the previous two films but can't say I fully hate it. It was obvious they wanted to make their own Die Hard but set in a children's theme park and I thought on paper some of these ideas and moments kinda worked. This has a giant "Eddie Murphy wanted to make a movie for his kids" vibe throughout most of the movie and seeing that Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer did not return to produce tells you all you need to know about what direction they took for this 3rd movie. While John Landis has made better films in the past, he is still somewhat of a downgrade compared to Tony Scott or Martin Brest who have a very distinct style to their action. This for whatever reason looks pretty bland for the most part and almost TV-like in how it moves and operates. This movie reminded me of that time when Full House had a couple of episodes when they went to Disneyland. A lot of the humor is very hit or miss and even when someone comes back like Serge from the first movie, they drag that comedic bit to the ground. Replacing Taggart with Flint was another big miss and the chemistry between Eddie Murphy and the rest of the cast didn't feel genuine or special. They even wasted a good John Saxon role. Also, shout out to that random George Lucas cameo. But I will say did like some of the smaller moments and some of the unintentional "so bad it's good" comedy that kept me from really hating on it. In a way, this kinda falls in line with a lot of action sequels from the 80s and 90s where they clearly ran out of effort, time, and money but had a deadline to make it all happen. Overall, it's a bummer that this didn't work because they could have done something more inventive with the post-Die Hard movement in the 90s like Speed.
2/5
The Wonder World theme should give it an extra half point alone.
 
The Wonder World theme should give it an extra half point alone.

Hmm.. true...
tbh I was really thinking about giving it a 2.5/5 but to me, it just needed more fun moments.
 
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